…As Delta NUJ spits fire
By Binebai Princewill
Senior reporter of the Vanguard Newspsper, Comrade Akpokona Omafuaire earlier today narrowly escaped death close to the Ovwian Police Station in Udu Local Government Area of Delta State.
Narrating his ordeal to The Liberator Newspapers, the senior Vanguard Reporter noted that he lives close to the Ovwian Police in Udu, stressing that he was driving out for official media coverage when the officers from the Ovwian Police division blocked the entrance for which his vehicle and other vehicles where supposed to pass.
As a law abiding citizen, he came down from his car and pleaded with the Police officers that he is a journalist going for an official assignment of news coverage.
He said thinking that these words would have soften the heart of the Police man but rather he was amazed when the police officers turned against him that who is he to even talk to them.
Akpokona stressed that the whole episode later turned out to be violent as parts of his car was vandalized and he was beaten to a palp by the police officers, adding that he narrowly escaped death.
However, the Vanguard reporter noted that the coordinated attack on him and his car was led by one Sergeant Godspower with machetes and other dangerous weapons.
The full statement of the Delta State Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) reads below:
Gov Okowa’s Curfew: NUJ Delta Condemns Police Assault On Journalist
… Calls On Journalists In The State Not To Report Any Police Activities
The Delta State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), has condemned an attack on Vanguard Correspondent, Comrade Akpokona Omafuaire by the Ovwian policemen in Warri.
In a statement jointly signed by the Chairman and Secretary, Comrades Michael Ikeogwu and Patrick Ochei respectively, the Union vehemently condemned the assault, maintaining it was unfortunate and uncalled for.
The Statement therefore called on the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Mohammed Hafiz Inuwa to immediately fish out the policemen involved in the molestation of the journalist and destruction of his car and appropriately sanction them.
The Union further reminded the CP that journalists are part of those on essential duty as enunciated and clarified by the Governor of Delta State, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa in his address while declaring the 48 hours curfew to restore sanity in the state after hoodlums hijacked the #EndSARS Protest to destroy Government facilities and properties.
Reading in parts, the statement insisted that “Journalists should not be objects of attacks by the police while carrying out their legitimate functions. The #EndSARS protesters are attacking journalists and media houses and at the same time the police are assaulting us. Where do we run to?
“We insist that the Police Commissioner must fish out Sergeant Godspower and other accomplices in this show of extreme power, otherwise we will severe ties with the police in the State.”
Moreover, NUJ in the Statement also cautioned the police to leave journalists out of their quagmire, affirming that Nigeria is in this dire situation today because of police recklessness and brutality.
Comrade Michael Ikeogwu,
Delta State Council.
Comrade Patrick Ochei,
Delta State Council.